Black-Capped Chickadee in Winter

Black capped chickadee on a branch
Black capped chickadee. Photo by Peter Lewis on Unsplash

Appearance: Black-capped chickadees are small birds about 5 1/4″ long. They have a black cap – as well as a black throat and cheek. They have a white breast and belly, body and wings are a gray-olive color with edges of white and during the winter their belly changes to a buffer tan.

Diet: Seeds, small fruits, and berries that remain on the trees, shrubs, and vines.

Feeder Food: Black-oil sunflower & safflower seeds (They peck a hole in the shell to get at the tiny seed bits inside), suet, peanut butter, and hulled peanuts.

Habitat: Black-capped chickadees are year-round birds found throughout the northern half of the US as well as most of Canada. They prefer the edges of forests and open wooded areas – including your backyard or even tree-lined parks in the city. They will also hang out in shrubs and willow thickets. Trees are still important for this bird because they are cavity nesters and offer a much needed place to roost in winter.

Range Map

Black capped chickadee range map
Black-capped chickadee range map. Compliments of The Cornell Lab.